Troops on the Road to Civilian Employment

With the recent budget cuts, the Army, as well as the other branches of service, has been forced to create a spike in returning Servicemembers - 90,000 annually for Army alone. As if finding a job wasn't already difficult, the increased number of Veterans entering the job search will certainly prove challenging. But there's hope, there are people and organizations that can help - Still Serving Veterans for instance partners with Siemens, an engineering and electronics giant that offers free computer-aided design, manufacturing and engineering (CAD, CAM & CAE) training to Veterans and connects with Commercial Driver's License (CDL) programs.

Veteran unemployment is sitting at around 6.7% overall, however this statistic can also be misleading. When broken down into age groups, a recent VA Veteran Employment study found that Veterans aged 25-44 years old were facing a rise in unemployment rates which sat at a staggering 18% unemployment rate while Veterans aged 45-54 are experiencing a decrease in unemployment but still have a high rate of 22%. Still Serving Veterans works to combat these statistics through their services and partnerships with companies like Siemens.

Veterans who have previously worked in drafting or engineering can apply to the Siemens PLM USA Veterans Initiative Program (V.I.P.) and is offered at twenty-two U.S. locations. Once approved, each Veteran will receive up to $17,000 worth of scholarship funding and they will be allowed to choose which of the 10 different courses they would like to take, all with a focus on their Teamcenter and NX (CAD/CAM/CAE) technology. 

Example of CAD/CAM/CAE

Example of CAD/CAM/CAE

According to Chuck Grindstaff, president and CEO of Siemens PLM software, “Siemens wants to do its part in showing our gratitude as we welcome our Veterans home and for many, what they need most, is a job that allows them to re-acclimate to civilian life and support their families.  We think this program will help.”

They are very careful to say that participating in this scholarship program does not guarantee employment with them or anyone else. However, even without a concrete job offer from Siemens, participants will still have plenty of employment opportunities.  They can put in an application with one of Siemen’s 70,000 customers who also use their CAD/CAM technology. All that combined military experience plus the extended civilian training is going to look great on a resume.

Still Serving Veterans also has connections to CDL programs. Although the participating in the program is not free, the G.I. Bill covers the cost of the certification courses. Once obtained, Veterans can find employment through the many trucking associations throughout the country. One organization that has a very definite plan for hiring former Servicemen and women is the American Trucking Association. The ATA has committed itself to hire more than 100,000 Veterans over the next two years and has partnered with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's "Hire Our Heroes" program.

"There's no higher calling for an American than to serve in our armed forces, and I'd like to think that driving a truck -- delivering America's most essential goods safely and efficiently is also a high calling," said American Trucking Association President and CEO Bill Graves. Plus, this career field provides excellent pay and benefits.

Keep in mind there are many resources available to help veterans, and Still Serving Veterans is always here to help. Still Serving Veterans provides resume and interview training, network opportunities, career counseling, and much more to Veterans at no charge to them. If you are a Veteran and looking for a new job or your next position, contact us to find out how we can help you in your journey. Or help support our mission with a donation - every $50 donation provides an hour of counseling to a Veteran in need.